SAP targets SMBs with plain talking approach

SAP Arabia is looking to demystify enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions once and for all as part of its new regional SMB campaign.

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By  Matthew Wade Published  January 3, 2005

SAP Arabia is planning to demystify enterprise resource planning (ERP) solutions once and for all as part of its new regional SMB campaign. “We have been catering mainly to the corporate sector and we now intend to serve the SMB market, an area we previously didn’t focus upon,” said Nabeel Hammad, business development director at SAP Arabia. According to Hammad, in the Middle East five years ago there was little awareness of how ERP solutions could help firms streamline processes, make strategic decisions and thus save time and money. Now, says Hammad, “businesses are realising how much it can help.” The education of the SMB market is far from complete however, with Hammad keen that SAP should demystify ERP solutions in the eyes of small and medium size businesses. He wants SAP to prove to potential customers that ERP solutions are not only cost-effective, but can also help firms “do better business, reduce costs and therefore increase profits by using best accepted practices.” With its MySAP ERP solution, the package most relevant for SMB customers, SAP’s comprehensive multi-modular solutions are bought as a complete package, with the total cost dependent upon the number of end users. Customers do not need to pay extra if they then decide to use other modules in the future. SAP’s recent deal with regional food production company, Co-op Islami, could be the first of a host of deals in the regional SMB sector, according to Hammad. He predicted that the recently announced merger between ERP rivals Oracle and Peoplesoft would also help SAP grab more SMB customers. “The time required by these two firms working to integrate their software and services will likely cause delays,” he explained. “We believe SMB customers would rather opt for SAP’s proven solution.” SAP is one of the world’s biggest ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) software vendors. ERP software allows businesses to access their data through one umbrella software system; because it is multi-modular in nature it can help businesses to manage the many different parts of their operations, from product planning to parts purchasing, customer service and order tracking. ERP software can even include application modules to integrate a firm’s financial and human resource data. Typically an ERP system uses, or is integrated with, a relational database system such as Oracle, SQL, MySQL, Sybase and DB2.

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